Cyprus Birding Tours

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Raptor Count, Cape Greco 20th September 2017

Migrating raptor numbers still seem to be low all over the island this autumn but at least I had a few at Cape Greco this morning. No where near what I would expect usually but good to get a European Honey Buzzard pass close over my observation point. Eleven others headed east further inland and I also spotted a male Western Marsh Harrier, a Peregrine Falcon, a Eurasian Sparrowhawk and an Eleonora’s Falcon. A European Roller headed southwards out to sea and a small number of Grey and Purple Heron migrated offshore.

European Honey Buzzard, Cape Greco 20th September 2017 (c) Cyprus Birding Tours

European Honey Buzzard, Cape Greco 20th September 2017 (c) Cyprus Birding Tours

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Waterbird Count Larnaca area this morning 15th September 2017

No rarities in with the usual autumn migrating waders at the Sewage Pools this morning after a Terek Sandpiper and Pacific Golden Plover had been reported there in the last few weeks. Plenty of Greater Flamingo feeding in the water there and numbers of Northern Shoveler and Common Teal already building up. Two Black-necked Grebe were in with the Little Grebe and two Sanderling were on the nearby beach.

Two Black Kite flew in and rested on the mud for a while and two juvenile Montagu’s Harrier were quartering nearby fields as they headed S to Cape Kiti.

Some of the more interesting species:

Meneou Pool
European Bee-eater 50+

Larnaca Airport Pools South
Eurasian Thick-knee 20
Montagu’s Harrier 1 juv

Larnaca Sewage Works
Black Kite 2 flew in and rested on mud
Greater Flamingo 549
Common Ringed Plover 28
Black-winged Stilt 5
Little Stint 61
Kentish Plover 95
Cattle Egret 2
Grey Heron 2
Little Ringed Plover 3
Marsh Sandpiper 6
Dunlin 22
Curlew Sandpiper 1 juv
Common Greenshank 2
Ferruginous Duck 10
Black-tailed Godwit 1
Eurasian Curlew 1
Northern Shoveler 352
Common Teal 119
Wood Sandpiper 3
Ruff 43
Common Redshank 4
Eurasian Thick-knee 1 flew over
Black-necked Grebe 2
Northern Pintail 2
Spur-winged Lapwing 3
Montagu’s Harrier 1 juv

Spiros Pool
Northern Wheatear 2
Red-backed Shrike 1 juv

Larnaca Airport Coast
Yellow-legged Gull 21
Spotted Flycatcher 1

Spiros Beach
Sanderling 2 (see photo)

Larnaca Salt Lake
Red-backed Shrike 3 juv
Masked Shrike 1 juv
Lesser Grey Shrike 1
European Roller 1

Kamares area of Salt Lake
Laughing Dove 4
Little Egret 7
Squacco Heron 2 (see photo)
Common Redshank 1
Sedge Warbler 1
Spur-winged Lapwing 2Sanderling, Larnaca 15th September 2017 (c) Cyprus Birding Tours

Squacco Heron, Larnaca 15th September 2017 (c) Cyprus Birding Tours

Squacco Heron, Larnaca 15th September 2017 (c) Cyprus Birding Tours


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Raptor count, Cape Greco 14th September 2017

The main bulk of migrating raptors have not yet put in an appearance so I was hoping that there would be some around at Cape Greco this morning. No such luck unfortunately with just one Western Marsh Harrier the only large raptor seen.

Cape Greco 8.15 – 11.45
Western Marsh Harrier 1
Eurasian Hobby 1
Eleonora’s Falcon 1
Grey Heron 1
Little Egret 1
Purple Heron 25
Whinchat 1
Willow Warbler 1
Yellow Wagtail 8 heading S out to sea
European Bee-eater h
Red-rumped Swallow 40+
Sand Martn 20+

Agia Napa Football Fields
Yellow Wagtail 90+
Common Hoopoe 2
Red-backed Shrike 3 juv
Lesser Grey Shrike 1
Spotted Flycatcher 1
Isabelline Wheatear 1

Larnaca Airport Pools South
Eurasian Thick-knee 35


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Migrating herons this morning off Cape Greco, 7th September 2017

Although I was at Cape Greco to do a raptor survey it was the flocks of herons that kept me busy counting this morning. Around 450 Purple Heron and 150 Grey Heron passed by off the east of the Cape in several flocks. A lone Black-crowned Night Heron, Little Egret and 11 Glossy Ibis also headed south off the coast and a surprise spot was a juvenile Greater Flamingo migrating in with a flock of Purple Herons.

Photo of a distant mixed flock of Grey and Purple Heron.

Migrating Herons, Cape Greco 7th September 2017 (c) Cyprus Birding Tours

Migrating Herons, Cape Greco 7th September 2017 (c) Cyprus Birding Tours


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Polis Chrysochou Bay 1st September 2017

After visiting Akrotiri I spent the afternoon sea watching in Polis Chrysochou Bay. The photo is of two Whimbrel seen migrating W offshore. Other sightings included:

Polis Chrysochou Bay 12:00 – 19-:00
Common Ringed Plover 4 heading W along coast
Garganey three groups c300 in total
Purple Heron in off sea in two groups of 74 in total then seen heading inland 19:00
Audouin’s Gull 1 heading W
Glossy Ibis 52 in off from N and then inland
Common Kingfisher
Eurasian Honey Buzzard 2 in off sea 14:40 and then lost to view
Whimbrel 2 heading W with another wader probably Ruff
Baltic Gull 1 heading W
Masked Shrike 1m

Whimbrel, Polis Chrysochou Bay, 1st September 2017 (c) Cyprus Birding Tours

Whimbrel, Polis Chrysochou Bay, 1st September 2017 (c) Cyprus Birding Tours


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Demoiselle Crane, Akrotiri Salt Lake 1st September 2017

Was lucky to be at Akrotiri this morning to see this flock of 24 Demoiselle Crane roosting in the middle of the lake and then take off around 10.05 and being lost to view by around 10:20.

Demoiselle Crane, Akrotiri Salt Lake 1st September 2017 (c) Cyprus Birding Tours

Demoiselle Crane, Akrotiri Salt Lake 1st September 2017 (c) Cyprus Birding Tours


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Cape Greco raptor count 31st August 2017

Well the first day of the raptor count at Cape Greco produced two hunting Common Kestrel and one Eleonora’s Falcon. Still a bit early for raptor migration so expecting better things over the next ten days.

A few other migrants around there and at Agia Napa Football Fields but overall quite quiet.

Cape Greco 8 – 12
Elenora’s Falcon 1 hunting
Red-backed Shrike 1
Lesser Whitethroat 2
Olivaceous Warbler 1
Pallid Swift 4
Greater Short-toed Lark 1 over

Agia Napa Football Fields
Yellow Wagtail 17
Isabelline Wheatear 1
Lesser Grey Shrike 2
Masked Shrike 1
European Bee-eater h
Spotted Flycatcher 1

Eleonora's Falcon, Cape Greco 31st August 2017 (c) Cyprus Birding Tours

Eleonora’s Falcon, Cape Greco 31st August 2017 (c) Cyprus Birding Tours


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Migrants on Larnaca Sewage Works this morning 15th August 2017

Some interesting waders on the Sewage Pools today although the Broad-billed Sandpipers that were there on Saturday seem to have moved on. Today I found an adult Ruddy Turnstone still in breeding plumage and a Eurasian Curlew – both of which are never common here. Also several Dunlin, Curlew Sandpiper, Common Ringed Plover, Little Ringed Plover, Ruff, Wood Sandpiper, Common Sandpiper and four Collared Pratincole (inc a juv). Still several Black-winged Stilt around as well as c30 Spur-winged Plover and at least 14 Kentish Plover.

In addition to four Greater Flamingo (photo) there were 11 Ferruginous Duck with Northern Shoveler numbers now up to 17. Six Garganey were preening and roosting as was at least one Common Teal.

Ten juvenile Yellow-legged Gull flew in and single juvenile White-winged Tern and Gull-billed Tern were feeding over the water. A Squacco Heron flew over heading east and two Pallid Swift flew over in with many Barn Swallow.

Greater Flamingo. Larnaca Sewage Works 15th August 2017 (c) Cyprus Birding Tours

Greater Flamingo. Larnaca Sewage Works 15th August 2017 (c) Cyprus Birding Tours


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Migrants in Cape Greco area this morning, 14th August 2017

Although I could only get distant photos of Lesser Grey Shrike and a female Red-backed Shrike this morning at Cape Greco there was plenty moving about in the bushes near Agia Napa Sewage Works:

Eastern Orphean Warbler 12+ (probably double that)
Barred Warbler 1 juv (and one possible other)
Lesser Whitethroat 4
Olivaceous Warbler 20+
Cyprus Warbler 1m, 1f and 2 juv
Spectacled Warbler 6 (inc 2 juvs)
European Bee-eater h high over
Little Grebe 19
Common Sandpiper 1
Spur-winged Lapwing 1
Common Hoopoe 1
Lesser Grey Shrike 1 (see photo)
Woodchat Shrike 1 (see photo)
Red-backed Shrike 1f

Lesser Grey Shrike, Agia Napa Sewage Works 14th August 2017 (c) Cyprus Birding Tours

Lesser Grey Shrike, Agia Napa Sewage Works 14th August 2017 (c) Cyprus Birding Tours

Red-backed Shrike female, Agia Napa Sewage Works 14th August 2017 (c) Cyprus Birding Tours

Red-backed Shrike female, Agia Napa Sewage Works 14th August 2017 (c) Cyprus Birding Tours


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Waterbird Count Larnaca 12th August 2017

Back in Larnaca and out early to do the monthly waterbird count there. Good to find three Broad-billed Sandpiper and a Grey Plover on the Sewage Works pools but very dry elsewhere with just a small stream of water in the Kamares end of the main Salt Lake.

Larnaca Sewage Works
Mallard 248
Ferruginous Duck 22
European Coot 40
Spur-winged Lapwing 29
Black-winged Stilt 11
Little Grebe 6
Yellow-legged Gull 22
Dunlin 10+
Broad-billed Sandpiper 3
Little Stint 15
Kentish Plover 5
Green Sandpiper 2
Northern Shoveler 4
Garganey 5
Common Teal 2
Grey Plover 1
Yellow Wagtail h
Ruff 41
Common Sandpiper 6
Grey Heron 1
Temminck’s Stint 1

Spiros Beach
Yellow-legged Gull 17
Kentish Plover 26 inc several juvs

Larnaca Airport Coast
Yellow-legged Gull 36
Pallid Swift 2

Larnaca Salt Lake (Tekke area)
Masked Shrike 3 imm

Larnaca Salt Lake (Kamares area)
Spur-winged Lapwing 10 inc 1 juv
Common Redshank 1 (see photo).
Green Sandpiper 1
Common Kingfisher 1

Common Redshank, Larnaca Salt Lake 12th August 2017 (c) Cyprus Birding Tours

Common Redshank, Larnaca Salt Lake 12th August 2017 (c) Cyprus Birding Tours


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Akamas area and visible migration Polis Chrysochou Bay 11th August 2017

Spent several hours sea watching in Polis Chrysochou Bay today. Plenty of Glossy Ibis on the move as well as Little Egret and a single Grey Heron. Bird of the day was a juvenile Greater Sandplover that flew onto the beach near me around 7.30 am and then flew off east after about 15 minutes. It was probably the large plover that I saw later migrating west in with a flock of Glossy Ibis.

Birds seen during the day there and inland included:

Polis Chrysochou Bay
From 7.00 am – 8.30am and 11.00am to 16.00 pm
Grey Heron 1
Glossy Ibis flocks of c60 + 34 + 38+ 11 + 52 + c100 + 45 + 18 + c80 (see photo)
Little Egret 27 flying over area all day
Greater Sandplover 1 on beach in morning then flying W later with flock of Glossy Ibis 12:10
Wader spp 18 probably Common Redshank flying offshore heading W
Common Ringed Plover in off sea and inland
Common Kingfisher 1
European Shag 1 offshore
Alpine Swift 2
Common Sandpiper 5

Pittokopos
European Roller 3
Lesser Grey Shrike 1 imm

Pittokopos to Androlikou track
European Roller 5
Long-legged Buzzard 1
Lesser Grey Shrike 2 ad
Woodchat Shrike 2m
Cyprus Warbler 1m and 1f
Masked Shrike 1m and 1 juv

Androlikou
Cyprus Wheatear 2

Prodromi
Eleonora’s Falcon 1 over

Glossy Ibis, Polis Chrysochou Bay 11th August 2017 (c) Cyprus Birding Tours

Glossy Ibis, Polis Chrysochou Bay 11th August 2017 (c) Cyprus Birding Tours

Woodchat Shrike, Androlikou 11th August 2017 (c) Cyprus Birding Tours

Woodchat Shrike, Androlikou 11th August 2017 (c) Cyprus Birding Tours